Ingrown Toenail Treatment Q & A
Are you experiencing pain from an ingrown toenail and have been unsuccessful in relieving it with at-home remedies? Come to Bay Area Foot and Ankle to get relief from your pain and discomfort today. Call today or schedule an appointment online! Dr. John W. Scivally, DPM and Dr. Robin K. Lie, DPM Specialize in Bunion Treatment, Fungal Toenail Treatment, Hammertoe Treatment and Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD). We serve patients from Walnut Creek CA, Brentwood CA, Concord CA, Pleasant Hill CA, Pittsburg CA, Antioch CA, Alamo CA, Danville CA, and Oakley CA.
Ingrown toenails are a common, painful condition. This happens when the toenail grows in crooked or too wide and digs into the surrounding skin. If not treated properly, they can lead to infection and foot odor. At Bay Area Foot and Ankle, we have experts trained in dealing with ingrown toenails, to help you on the road to healthy feet.
Should I go to a podiatrist for ingrown toenail?
Ingrown nails are very common and occur when nail corners or sides dig painfully into the soft tissue of nail grooves, often leading to redness, irritation, and swelling. Toenails typically grow straight out, but sometimes one or both sides or corners grow and curve into the flesh. Other toes can be affected by this condition but the big toe is the most common.
You should see a podiatrist immediately if any excessive redness or drainage is present around the toenail. You should also visit a podiatrist if you fail to see an improvement in your condition with home remedies. If you have poor circulation or diabetes, this can lead to more severe complications and you should seek immediate treatment at the first sight of an ingrown toenail.
A podiatrist may prescribe a topical or oral medication to treat the infection and will remove the ingrown portion of the nail. Your podiatrist may perform a procedure to permanently prevent ingrown nails if ingrown nails are a chronic problem. The corner of the nail that causes pain and the root of that nail are removed by the use of a laser, a chemical, or other methods.
Can you permanently fix an ingrown toenail?
Your doctor may recommend ingrown toenail surgery if:
- At-home remedies don’t resolve your ingrown toenail
- You have recurring ingrown toenails
- You have another condition such as diabetes that makes complications more likely
Part of your toenail or the full toenail may need to be removed, depending on your situation.
First, your doctor will clean the toe and administer an anesthetic injection in preparation for the surgery. This can be quite uncomfortable. A snug elastic band may be applied to the area near where your toe joins your foot. They may put a wedge under your nail to hold up the ingrown section.
Once you’re prepped, the doctor will use scissors and special tools to separate your toenail from the bed, making a vertical cut from the ingrown side down to the cuticle. They’ll then remove the cut section. If necessary, the entire nail may be removed, particularly if both sides of your nail are ingrown.
Your doctor will use either a heated electrical device called a cautery or an acidic solution such as phenol or trichloroacetic acid to disrupt the nail matrix from which your nail grows. This stops your nail from bleeding. It also means that section of your nail likely won’t regrow. Your nail may look different than before the surgery if it does regrow. Finally, a bandage covered with petroleum jelly is applied to the toe.
How long do ingrown toenails last?
A method involves using a small piece of cotton or waxed dental floss to gently lift up the corner of the problem nail. Change out the cotton or floss frequently, as it tends to get dirty because of the location on the body.
If the above methods aren’t working and your infection is mild or starts to worsen, see your healthcare provider. Signs of worsening infection include:
- Pus drainage
- Increased pain
In some cases, you may need antibiotics along with warm soaks. Part of the nail may need to be removed if after 2 to 3 days of antibiotics the toenail doesn’t get better or gets worse. It can take 1 to 2 weeks to clear up completely with treatment.
If you or someone you know is suffering from an ingrown toenail, don’t hesitate to call us today! At Bay Area Foot and Ankle, we know how to treat your ingrown toenails with the most efficient procedures. Contact our office today to get in touch with a specialist. To book an appointment, call us or visit us online! Serving Walnut Creek, Brentwood, Concord, Pleasant Hill, Pittsburg, Antioch, Alamo, Danville, and Oakley CA.
Additional Services You May Need
▸Custom Foot Orthotics
▸Ingrown Toenail Specialist
▸Traditional Podiatry Care
▸Foot and Ankle Surgery Clinic
▸Corns and Calluses
▸Foot Arthritis and Joint
▸Video Gait Analysis
▸Pediatric Foot Specialist
▸Chronic Foot Injury
▸Diabetic Foot Specialist
▸Acute Foot Injuries
▸Podiatric Sports Services
▸Plantar Fasciitis Specialists